Posts Tagged ‘storage trends’

Enterprise storage trends: SSDs, ability optimization, automobile tiering

Sunday, October 9th, 2011

What we will learn: It competence seem as if information storage technologies are a small stodgy
and out of date, though there are copiousness of enterprise
storage trends
rising during both vast storage vendors and smaller upstarts. Solid-state storage,
virtualization-optimized storage, ability optimization and automated
storage tiering (AST)
have all turn some-more distinguished in IT shops newly given of a success
users have garnered from their use.

, generally peep storage, has gained traction due to a opening and
mechanical characteristics. Flash storage competence be expensive, though usually on a ability basis; most
applications can run totally in flash. And as some-more people burst on a server virtualization
platform, vendors are prickly for an event to arise new technologies such as “VM-aware”
storage systems. In addition, capacity
has strike a belligerent running, generally now that information storage is flourishing during such a
fast rate among users. Many users are also jumping on a auto-tiering
bandwagon given of a technology’s ability to automatically tier storage and urge system

Read some-more about these trending information storage technologies and what they can do for your data
storage environment.


Solid-state cache
Virtualization-optimized storage
Capacity optimization
Automated tiered storage
Innovation in storage

The craving information storage attention doesn’t have a repute as a hotbed of innovation, but
that characterization competence be unfair. Although bedrock technologies like RAID and SCSI have
soldiered along for some-more than dual decades, new ideas have flourished as well. Today there are
several craving storage
value articulate about. Technologies like solid-state storage, ability optimization and
automatic tiering are gaining prominence, and specialized storage systems for practical servers are
being developed. Although a craving arrays of tomorrow will still be utterly recognizable,
they’ll adopt and allege these new concepts.

All-Flash storage

Although peep is dear on a ability basement compared to tough hoop technology, many
applications can be run totally in flash. iSCSI colonize Nimbus Data Systems Inc. transitioned to
an all-flash charity final year and has seen good results. “Our S-Class craving storage arrays
deliver 90% revoke appetite costs and 24x improved I/O performance,” pronounced CEO Thomas Isakovich. “And
since we embody inline
and thin
, we’re rival on a cost-per-used-capacity basement as well.”

All-flash storage in a PCI label form cause is renouned in high-performance applications as well.
Fusion-io has gained traction with a ioDrive cards, and LSI, OCZ Technology Group Inc., Texas
Memory Systems Inc. and Virident Systems Inc. have also found craving success with solid-state
systems. Flash builder Micron Technology Inc. recently jumped into this marketplace with a PCI Express
flash storage label labelled 25% revoke than a competition.

Solid-state cache

Spinning captivating disks have been a substructure for craving information storage given a 1950s,
and for usually about as prolonged there’s been speak of how solid-state storage will excommunicate them. Today’s
storage is usually a decade old, nonetheless it has already gained poignant traction interjection to
its opening and automatic characteristics. Hard hoop drives (HDDs) won’t go divided anytime soon,
but NAND peep will expected turn a informed and constant member opposite a spectrum of
enterprise storage.

Hard disks surpass during delivering ability and consecutive review and write performance, though modern
workloads have changed. Today’s hypervisors and database-driven applications direct discerning random
access that’s formidable to grasp with automatic arms, heads and platters. The best enterprise
storage arrays use RAM as a cache to accelerate pointless I/O, though RAM chips are generally too
expensive to muster in bulk.

NAND peep memory, in contrast, is usually as discerning during servicing pointless review and write requests as
it is with those that start tighten together, and a fastest craving NAND peep tools challenge
DRAM for review performance. Although reduction expensive, peep memory (especially a enterprise-grade
cell [SLC]
variety) stays an sequence of bulk some-more dear than tough hoop capacity. Growth
in a deployment of solid-state
drives (SSDs)
has slowed and isn’t expected to excommunicate captivating media in capacity-oriented
applications anytime soon.

Flash memory has found a niche as a cache for tough hoop drive-based storage systems. Caching
differs from tiered storage in that it doesn’t use solid-state memory as a permanent plcae for
data storage. Rather, this record redirects review and write requests from hoop to cache
on-demand to accelerate performance, generally pointless I/O, though commits all writes to disk

Major vendors like EMC Corp. and NetApp Inc. have placed peep memory in their storage arrays
and designed controller program to use it as a cache rather than a tier. NetApp’s Flash Cache
cards use a inner PCI train in their filers, while EMC’s Clariion FAST Cache relies on
SATA-connected SSDs. But both precedence their existent controllers and enhance on a algorithms
already in place for RAM caching.

Avere Systems Inc. and Marvell Technology Group Ltd., a integrate of relations newcomers, take a
different tack. With a story in a scale-out
network-attached storage (NAS)
space, Avere’s group grown an apparatus that sits in-band
between existent NAS arrays and clients. “No singular record is best for all workloads,” pronounced Ron
Bianchini, Avere’s owner and CEO, “so we built a device that integrates a best of RAM, flash
and disk.” Bianchini claims Avere’s FXT apparatus delivers 50 times revoke entrance latency regulating a
customer’s existent NAS devices.

Marvell’s arriving DragonFly Virtual Storage Accelerator (VSA) label is designed for placement
inside a server itself. The DragonFly uses fast non-volatile RAM (NVRAM) as good as
SATA-connected SSDs for cache capacity, though all information is committed to a storage array eventually.
“This is focused on pointless writes, and it’s a new product category,” claims Shawn Kung, executive of
product selling during Marvell. “DragonFly can produce an adult to 10x aloft practical appurtenance I/O per
second, while obscure over cost by 50% or more.” The association skeleton to broach production
products in a fourth quarter.

EMC, famous for a vast craving storage arrays, is also relocating into server-side caching.
Barry Burke, arch plan officer for EMC Symmetrix, pronounced EMC’s Lightning plan “will integrate
with a programmed tiering capabilities already delivered to VMAX and VNX customers.” EMC previewed
the plan during a new EMC World discussion and skeleton to boat it after this year.

Editor’s tip: Although there are several options for solid-state
storage, including cache, PCI Express and more, users will expected notice a opening boost no
matter what choice they choose. Listen to this podcast to find out a differences between the
various solid-state
, and learn how any one can boost your performance.

The finish of a SAN?

Although SCSI is still a widespread craving information storage custom in a form of Fibre
Channel and iSCSI, that competence change in a future. The arise of PCI Express storage
suggests that centralized networked storage competence not always dominate. Internal cards dramatically
reduce entrance latency, and a opening of these solutions is an sequence of bulk improved than
traditional SCSI-based technology.

The arise of practical machine-specific and cloud storage suggests that other changes are imminent.
In both cases, some products eschew normal retard or record entrance in preference of an application
programming interface (API). These inclination are designed to be integrated, programmed components of a
larger environment, focus height or hypervisor,
and would no longer need storage architects and managers.

Virtualization-optimized storage

One common motorist for a adoption of high-performance storage arrays is a expanding use of
server virtualization. Hypervisors concede mixed practical machines (VMs) to share a singular hardware
platform, that can have critical side effects when it comes to storage I/O. Rather than a delayed and
predictable tide of mostly consecutive data, a bustling virtual
server environment
is a glow hose swell of pointless reads and writes.

This “I/O blender” hurdles a simple assumptions used to arise storage complement controllers
and caching strategies, and vendors are fast bettering to a new rules. The deployment of SSD
and peep caches help, though practical servers are perfectionist in other ways as well. Virtual
environments need impassioned flexibility, with fast storage provisioning and energetic mutation of
workloads from appurtenance to machine. Vendors like VMware Inc. are fast rolling out technologies to
integrate hypervisor and server management, including VMware’s renouned VAAI.

Virtual server environments are an event for creation and new ideas, and startups are
jumping into a fray. One such company, Tintri Inc., has grown a “VM-aware” storage system
that combines SATA HDDs, NAND peep and inline information deduplication to accommodate a opening and
flexibility needs of practical servers. “Traditional storage systems conduct LUNs, volumes or tiers,
which have no unique definition for VMs,” pronounced Tintri CEO Kieran Harty. “Tintri VMstore is managed
in terms of VMs and practical disks, and we were built from blemish to accommodate a final of a VM

Tintri’s VM-aware storage target, isn’t a usually option. IO Turbine Inc. leverages PCIe-based
flash cards or SSDs in server hardware with Accelio, a VM-aware storage acceleration software.
“Accelio enables some-more applications to be deployed on practical machines though a I/O performance
limitations of required storage,” claims Rich Boberg, IO Turbine’s CEO. The Accelio driver
transparently redirects I/O requests to a peep as indispensable to revoke a bucket on existent storage

Editor’s tip: For a some-more in-depth demeanour during vStorage APIs for Array Integration, check
out this tip from on a pros and cons of VAAI.

Capacity optimization

Not all information storage innovations are focused on performance. The expansion of information has been a major
challenge in many environments, and deletion information isn’t always an excusable answer. Startups like
Ocarina and Storwize updated existent technologies like application and single-instance
storage (SIS)
for complicated storage applications. Now that these companies are in a hands of
major vendors (Dell Inc. and IBM, respectively), users are commencement to give ability optimization
a critical look.

has sputter effects, requiring reduction ability for replication, backup and disaster
recovery (DR) as good as primary information storage. “The Ocarina record is stretchable adequate to be
optimized for a platforms we’re embedding a record into,” pronounced Mike Davis, marketing
manager for Dell’s record complement and optimization technologies. “This is an end-to-end strategy, so
we’re looking closely during how we can extend these advantages over a storage platforms to a cloud
as good as a server tier.”

is also relocating to a primary storage space. Once usually used for backup and
archiving applications, NetApp, Nexenta Systems Inc., Nimbus Data Systems Inc., Permabit Technology
Corp. and others are requesting deduplication record in arrays and appliances. “NetApp’s
deduplication record [formerly famous as A-SIS] is optimized for both primary [performance and
availability] as good as delegate [capacity-optimized backup, repository and DR] storage
requirements,” pronounced Val Bercovici, NetApp’s cloud czar. NetApp integrated deduplication into its
storage program and claims no latency over on I/O traffic.

Editor’s tip: As information continues a unusual rate of growth, users are struggling to
find ways to minimize a volume of information they need to store in their information storage
environment. In this podcast with Arun Taneja, owner and consulting researcher during Taneja Group,
Taneja discusses a storage
optimization and ability reduction
products that are accessible in a market.

Automated tiered storage

One prohibited area of creation for a largest craving storage vendors is a mutation of
their arrays from bound RAID systems to granular, automatically tiered storage devices. Smaller
companies like 3PAR and Compellent (now partial of Hewlett-Packard Co. and Dell, respectively) kicked
off this trend, though EMC, Hitachi Data Systems and IBM are delivering this record as well.

A new stand of startups, including Nexenta, are also active in this area. “NexentaStor leverages
SSDs for hybrid storage pools, that automatically tier frequently accessed blocks to a SSDs,”
noted Evan Powell, Nexenta’s CEO. Powell also pronounced that his firm’s program height allows users
to supply their possess SSDs, that he claims reduces a cost of entrance for this technology.

EMC has combined practical provisioning and programmed tiering opposite a product line. “EMC took a
new storage record [flash] and used it to broach both larger performance, as good as cost
savings,” pronounced Chuck Hollis, EMC’s tellurian selling arch record officer. “Best of all, it’s
far easier to set adult and manage.”

Like caching, programmed tiered storage improves information storage complement opening as most as it
attacks a cost of capacity. By relocating “hot” information to faster storage inclination (10K or 15K rpm disks
or SSD), tiered storage systems can perform faster than identical inclination though a responsibility of
widely deploying these faster devices. Conversely, programmed tiering can be some-more energy- and
space-efficient given it moves “bulk” information to slower though larger-capacity drives.

Editor’s tip: Although automobile tiering is gaining traction in a industry, many people
are seeking themselves if it’s right for them. Listen to this podcast to get tips on how to
implement an automated
project; how to confirm if automobile tiering is gaining too most control over your
environment; and get a dip on sub-LUN tiering.

Innovation in storage

Enterprise storage vendors contingency say compatibility, fortitude and opening while
advancing a state of a art in record — goals that competence infrequently seem during odds. Although
smaller companies have been a small some-more nimble during introducing new innovations like capacity
optimization and virtualization-aware storage access, a vast vendors are also relocating quickly.
They’ve put into use solid-state caching and programmed tiered storage, and are relocating forward
in other areas. Whether by invention or acquisition, creation is alive and good in
enterprise storage.

BIO: Stephen Foskett is an eccentric consultant and author specializing in enterprise
storage and cloud computing. He is obliged for Gestalt IT, a village of eccentric IT
thought leaders, and organizes their Tech Field Day events. He can be found online at, and on Twitter during @SFoskett.

This was initial published in Oct 2011

Article source:

Unified information storage adoption rate rising among users

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

What you’ll learn in this tip: The unified
data storage
adoption rate is rising as some-more storage administrators comprehend a advantages the
technology can yield to their information storage environments. Unified
is a singular common pool of storage that can mix both retard and record data,
eliminating a need to conduct apart retard and record systems. Fewer storage systems meant fewer
systems to energy and cool, that can revoke costs and optimize resources. Plus, as practical server
environments and a cloud turn some-more renouned among users, converging is key. Having one
unified storage complement helps emanate a standardised environment.

In her latest Storage repository column, Terri McClure, a comparison researcher during Enterprise
Strategy Group (ESG), analyzes a latest one information storage trends.

Although it seems like we’ve been conference about one storage forever, it’s still relatively
new — and that means we’re sincerely early

in a adoption cycle.

But it’s transparent that unified, or multiprotocol,
storage has a flattering appealing value proposition. In a unified
storage environment
, information storage becomes a common apparatus pool, accessible to store either
block or record information that can be configured to accommodate focus needs as they arise. So it comes as
no warn that there’s poignant user seductiveness in deploying one storage platforms. In a
recent consult of 306 IT professionals with storage formulation or decision-making responsibilities,
ESG found that 70% of those surveyed have possibly deployed or are formulation to muster unified
storage: 23% have deployed a technology, while 47% are still in a formulation phase.

Why one information storage?

Our figure of one out of each 4 surveyed IT users deploying one storage is significant
in that information storage users are notoriously regressive when it comes to adopting new technologies,
and for good reason. The proverb “If it ain’t broke, don’t repair it” is alive and good in storage
infrastructure teams.

If a storage array fails and information is untouched or lost, it could cost a organisation millions of
dollars and a storage director could remove their job. Users have been traffic with having
separate systems for block
and record data
, and are used to it. They’ll continue their current, stovepiped proceed until
they’re amply gentle a record has grown and there’s no risk in adoption, or
their corporate budgets direct a some-more affordable, stretchable and fit solution. Our research
indicates it might be a matter of both.

More on one information storage

Multiprotocol and unified
data storage
educational for SMBs

plays critical purpose in information storage environments

arrays benefit interest, adoption

Unified storage can boost operational potency by providing a singular common pool of storage
that can be used where and when needed, expelling a need to deploy, power, cold and manage
separate retard and record systems. This elementary rebate in a series of systems to muster can go a
long approach in shortening operational costs, never mind a coherence afforded to a business from
having a complement that can be deployed in whatever ability indispensable (without carrying to compensate a price
of carrying guessed wrong when doing their capacity planning

benefaction an even larger challenge. Using standards-based commodity physical
servers, new practical servers and applications can be deployed in a fragment of a time it used to
take in a earthy world, and a practical machines could need possibly record or retard storage to
support apps.

A liquid practical server sourroundings creates a requirement for a fluid, manageable storage
environment. Yet storage continues to be fragmented and specialized. Unified storage goes a long
way in alleviating these issues.

Unified storage use trends

ESG investigate finds a transparent association between a series of systems underneath government and unified
storage adoption
. A whopping 80% of those with 26 to 100 dissimilar storage systems, and 83% of
those with 100 or some-more systems, have possibly deployed or devise to muster one storage — and those
with 100 or some-more systems are heading a early adopter category, with 32% carrying already deployed
unified storage. This corresponds to ESG’s spending information formula that users continue their expostulate to
reduce their altogether cost of doing business, generally on a operational cost front.

It follows that we would see a clever association between one storage adoption and
satisfaction with function rates, as one storage eliminates specialized retard or file
stovepipes, and that’s what a investigate shows. Eighty-nine percent of early adopters are mostly or
completely confident with their function rates vs. 77% of those now not regulating unified
storage. We see a biggest differential with those stating they’re totally satisfied, with
nearly a third of early adopters descending in this category, two-and-a-half times a series of
non-adopters that are totally satisfied. Significantly, not a singular one storage adopter
responded they were “not during all satisfied.”

Unified information storage deployment alternatives

Today, users have mixed approaches to deploying one storage; they can muster a unified
storage system
, that is an integrated complement that supports both retard and record data, or they
can muster a record gateway that attaches around a storage-area network (SAN) to retard storage shared
with other applications. Our investigate indicates there isn’t a clever welfare for either
approach, with 30% of respondents regulating or formulation to use a one system, 32% a gateway and 35%
planning to use both approaches.

There are positively business cases that can be done for both. Gateways concede users to redeploy
existing retard storage investments to support record information by adding a “file personality” to a front
end. But a downside is that a SAN-attached retard storage and a gateway are truly dual distinct
components that need to be managed. Unified systems don’t lift a captivate of permitting users to
tap into existent SAN assets, though they do revoke a series of systems underneath management. ESG
expects to see a continued trend of users holding both approaches to harmonize their information storage
environments since users contingency understanding with scrupulously allocating existent investments in unison with
adding new systems.

The bottom line

While specific doing strategies might still be undetermined, ESG’s investigate clearly finds
unified storage will turn some-more common. It’s appealing in terms of both IT and financial
efficiency — a winning multiple by any standard. ESG’s commentary exhibit a transparent enterprise for
improved complement potency as IT groups demeanour to optimize their stream storage infrastructure
investments in light of stability information expansion and a ongoing tough macro-economic climate.

In further to covering adult past IT sins such as bad ability utilization, one storage can
help IT organizations accelerate infrastructure converging and apparatus optimization, that are
crucial components to destiny visions of dynamic, rarely virtualized or private cloud computing
environments. Indeed, as “cloud” becomes a some-more common indication for a expenditure of IT resources,
there’s another pithy value for a standardization that one storage can deliver.

BIO: Terri McClure is a comparison storage researcher during Enterprise Strategy Group, Milford,

This essay was formerly published in Storage

This was initial published in Jun 2011

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